WHY ON-PREMISES EQUIPMENT IS THE BEST CHOICE FOR ENTERPRISE LIVE TV OR VIDEO ON DEMAND CONVERSION AND DISTRIBUTION.
A variety of new networks are emerging for delivering incredible live and on demand content. This infrastructure includes 4G/LTE, Wimax and even the open internet. In growing markets as well as established territories many operators are leapfrogging physical buildout by installing cell towers, public local area networks and more. Other service providers are foregoing their own framework altogether by distributing programming over the open web.
These networking methods can win incredible cost-savings versus traditional cable and fiber investment. But network capacity must be combined with an efficient means of converting and distributing programming to any number of users on a wide array of connected devices. Reliable encoding, transcoding and streaming to subscribers can be especially challenging on low-bandwidth networks or exclusively wireless systems.
First, a quick explanation of terms. IP encoding refers to transforming programming into IP signals from non-IP formats such as ASI and HD-SDI. Transcoding entails converting those IP feeds into popular file types for viewing on a wide array of devices often including set-top boxes, smartphones, tablets and desktop and laptop computers.
Cloud-based encoding and transcoding is typically marketed as a leading edge strategy to greatly reduce or eliminate the need for on-premises encoding and transcoding hardware. Indeed, one-time live sports events, concerts and single corporate presentations distributed over very high-capacity networks may be solid candidates for cloud-based content conversion and delivery. But a pay TV lineup or video on demand service is best facilitated by on-premises conversion and dissemination infrastructure for several reasons.
CLOUD-BASED CONVERSION AND DELIVERY ARCHITECTURE MAY BE LOCATED FAR FROM AN OPERATOR’S NETWORK.
Even in established territories, cloud-based transcoding, encoding and delivery infrastructure is often a great distance from an operator’s customer base. As service providers fully realize, the farther away equipment sits from end-users, the larger the delay between a viewer selecting content and her enjoying that programming.
LIVE TV SERVICES REQUIRE SIGNAL RECEPTION CAPABILITIES THAT BLEND POORLY WITH OFF-SITE CLOUDS.
TV networks almost universally make content available via satellite to ensure that the highest-quality feed is ingested into a TV operator’s head end for conversion and delivery to end-users. In an off-site cloud-based scenario, a service provider must install satellite reception equipment at the same location as cloud hardware or face hefty transport bandwidth costs between a satellite downlink location and an encoding, transcoding and streaming hub. Channels received over-the-air likewise require reception equipment to be housed in the same facility as or in close proximity to formatting and distribution infrastructure.
CLOUD-BASED CONVERSION REQUIRES SUPERIOR CONNECTIVITY TO STREAMING DELIVERY OPERATIONS.
Live and on demand content must be routed in a timely manner between encoding, transcoding and distribution facilities to enable users to view programming at the sub-second speed they’re accustomed to with premium services. But near-instant communication between equipment significant distances apart is often completely unavailable (especially over low-capacity or wireless networks) or that reliable connectivity comes at a heavy price. Whatever savings an operator realizes through cloud-based encoding and transcoding versus purchasing on-premises equipment may be far exceeded by the cost of guaranteeing that converted programming travels point-to-point with utmost speed and performance.
Cloud-based encoding and transcoding may be excellent options for one-time events and occasional content services. But ongoing live TV services and video on demand offerings require a high quality system with elements in close proximity to one another. And relative to the potential costs associated with content performance and speed of access, on-premises equipment can be far less expensive and more manageable than cloud-based solutions. Matrixstream offers just such an enterprise scale, high-performance, cost-effective and end-to-end IPTV solution for deployment across practically any IP network.
Contact us today for details on deploying an IPTV or VOD service that will generate substantial direct revenue and which can be bundled with high-margin offerings such as broadband, wireless, home phone and more.
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